he was holding her hand when the world changed.
one moment she was laughing and he was admiring her generous spirit. her freedom.
and then it hit him.
something had changed.
this was not the same person.
this was not okay. read more >
it’s the first time he’s been alone with her.
he scheduled a six-top conference room to prep a powerpoint deck explaining third quarter dividends. it’s his presentation, but her boss asked her to contribute a pair of slides, 3-d pie charts breaking out revenue by market.
she grabs the monitor plug and connects it to her laptop, ‘i’ll drive.’ read more >
once he was in love.
but not anymore. far from it.
it was all the touching.
she liked backrubs, and he was cursed with strong hands. it would have been a perfect match if only he had some patience, if only he liked to give back rubs, if only he found some pleasure in physical contact. it was a task that grew oppressive almost instantly. and when she asked for oil, it crossed the threshold into torture. he tried to breath through it, push on to the other side, but he could never play it off, no matter the intensity or duration, she was always disappointed. he wouldn’t even get credit for the forty seconds when he was nailing it. read more >
he sits in his apartment, a movie on the dish.
he pours himself another drink. he likes to get just the right amount of wasted before calling it a night. it takes careful calculation. with the hard stuff, you really have to pace yourself. it’s not about the number, it’s about the speed, and he’s got a nice momentum going. he has at least an hour more fun.
and if all else fails, he has a safety net. work is better with a hangover. read more >
at the end of the longest day she can remember, mrs. kelly pulls into the parking lot of the children’s hospital. it’s been years since she’s been here. thirteen to be exact.
she’s tired of being exact.
she starts to climb out before she’s turned off the engine. the car bucks forward and hits the low cement bumper. she couldn’t be any more frazzled than she already was, so she takes it more or less in stride.
she opens the back door and coaxes out a large cardboard box. she has to put it on the ground to close the door again. she hoists the box up and makes her way toward the front door, or at least where she remembers the door to be. the box blocks her view. she shuffles forward, inching her feet slowly, one by one, concerned that she’ll to hit a curb. she really doesn’t need a broken arm to remember this day by. there are other broken things.
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“don’t move. i’ve almost got your left eye.”
kevin does as he’s told, watching rachel scribble and erase, scribble and erase.
“are you almost done?”
she focuses on the sheet of paper in front of her, “every time you move, you make it take longer.” read more >